The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) said it undertook a revision of the framework stipulating the processes for resolving consumer complaints arising from service delivery by telecoms operator in order to achieve greater effectiveness in the sector.

Speaking on the revision, the executive vice chairman of NCC, Prof Umar Danbatta, said the framework was revised by the commission in November, 2019 at a programme attended by representatives of telecoms operators, consumers and other consumer rights advocacy groups in the country, saying it is aimed at strengthening protection of telecoms consumers and other stakeholders.

“The 2019 review of the CC/SLA, in collaboration with operators and other stakeholders, was essentially to strengthen effective and prompt resolutions of consumers complaints by reviewing the timelines, broaden and streamline complaint categories and establishing applicable sanctions on operators that fail to meet the timelines stated for resolving issues related to services delivery to their consumers,” he said.

The NCC boss said the reviewed CC/SLA, with respect to the broad category of Quality of Service and Quality of Experience (QoS and QoE) in the data segment, when a telecom subscriber experiences fluctuation in service, such as instability in Internet services, the subscriber shall be contacted by the service provider within four hours of reporting the incident and the disruption shall be restored within 72 hours.

“If the matter is escalated to the commission, the consumer is expected to receive a feedback within two hours, while the commission ensures the issue is resolved within 48 hours. Additionally, the subscriber shall be offered an apology, and the expiry date of his data bundle shall be extended by the number of days the disruption lasted.

“Under the broad category, ‘Billing’, complaints connected to any unexplained change in account balance resulting in a drop in balance, due to overcharging subscriber’s account for calls, Short Messaging Services (SMS) and Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS), shall be resolved by the operator within 24 hours. Should there be a need by the subscriber to escalate the complaint to NCC, the Commission shall ensure the matter is resolved within 12 hours. The subscriber shall be notified of resolution and where applicable, compensated with five percent of overcharged amount which is payable daily to the consumer for every 24hrs of default,” he added.

A statement by the commission’s director of public affairs, Dr Ikechukwu Adinde, said the CC/SLA document, which is available on the commission’s website, contains 17 broad categories and about 90 subcategories, even as it enjoined all stakeholders, particularly the telecom consumers, to create the time to study the document in order to understand their rights and privileges.

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